Polaris buys French maker of low-speed personal vehicles

  • Article by: Steve Alexander
  • Star Tribune
  • April 11, 2013 - 10:26 AM

Polaris Industries, a maker of snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles, said Thursday it has acquired the privately owned French company A.M. Holding S.A.S., which makes personal on-road vehicles and commercial vehicles under the name Aixam Mega.

Polaris, based in Medina, said the deal extends its line of small vehicles by adding the Aixam City S, which looks like a car but is a four-wheeled, enclosed, low-speed personal vehicle that does not require a driver’s license to operate in many European countries. In addition, the French company sells diesel and electric-powered light commercial vehicles.

Terms of the transaction weren’t disclosed, although Polaris said it would pay with its cash on hand. Polaris said the deal is expected to be slightly accretive to its earnings per share this year after acquisition costs are paid.

Polaris earned $312.3 million on revenue of $3.2 billion last year. Besides snowmobiles and off-road vehicles, Polaris sells motorcycles and on-road electric hybrid vehicles.

Polaris CEO Scott Wine said the acquisition is part of an effort to position Polaris as a leader In the worldwide small-vehicle market. Previously the company announced plans to build a manufacturing plant in Opole, Poland

Steve Alexander • 612-673-4553

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